Every 40 seconds, some in America has a stroke. It’s the fifth leading cause of death in the United States and a leading cause of long- term disability. However, Amina S. Qazi, DO, at St. Joseph Cardiology, shares, “Stroke is largely preventable.”
May is American Stroke Month. A month dedicated to help end stroke by heightening awareness of its warning signs and symptoms. Important facts:
What Causes Stroke?
“A stroke occurs when blood flow to part of the brain is blocked, causing brain cells to die from lack of oxygen and nutrients. This is a result of either something blocking an artery to the brain or a blood vessel in the brain breaking open and leaking blood into the brain’s tissue, causing pressure in the brain,” says Dr. Qazi. “It’s important to note some people may only experience a temporary blockage of blood flow with no permanent brain damage, also known as transient ischemic attack or TIA, which puts them at higher risk of stroke.”
What Are Risk Factors for Stroke?
The most significant risk factor for stroke is high blood pressure, which can be controlled. Other common risk factors that can be controlled or treated include:
Dr. Qazi adds, “Proactively addressing both medical conditions and behaviors can help prevent or decrease your risk for stroke.”
How Can You Reduce Your Stroke Risk?
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Stroke?
Quick Treatment is Critical
“Stroke treatment depends on how quickly a stroke victim gets to a hospital to be evaluated,” says Dr. Qazi. “Calling 911 is the very best way to get to the hospital quickly and safely. Emergency medical personnel will call ahead, and stroke care providers will be ready to help.”
Do You Have Concerns?
If you have concerns about your overall health or risk of stroke, please share them with your St. Joseph Healthcare primary care provider.